Stop Smart Meters Australia AGM and launch of People Power Victoria – No Smart Meters Political Party


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The Australian Energy Regulator publishes proposed 2015 Advanced Metering Infrastructure Charges Applications

The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has received proposals from the five Victorian electricity distributors for charges to apply to smart meters in 2015. The AER is responsible for insuring that the metering service charges of each Victorian distributor allow for recovery from retailers of actual rollout expenditure which is within ‘scope‘ and ‘prudent‘.

The original Cost Recovery Order in Council, which set up the frame work for distributors to recover advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) costs from retailers, was gazetted on 28 August 2007, and subsequently amended in further Orders in Council (OIC). A ‘cost through’ model applies, under which budgets for the rollout are established at the beginning of each period and then annual charges are adjusted based on actual expenditure. The current proposals from the five Victorian electricity distributors relate to revised charges for AMI services for the year commencing 1 January 2015. The original budget for these charges was set by the AER in its Final Determination, Victorian Advanced Metering Infrastructure Review 2012–15 budget and charges applications.

Recoverable expenses, which are reputed to amount to 2.3 billion dollars for the program and are ultimately paid for by consumers, include a return on capital (as determined by the AER), depreciation, maintenance and operating expenditure. This means that all the AMI costs of the rollout, from the cost of smart meters and installation of smart meters through to the costs of AMI communications infrastructure and AMI Information Technology systems, providing expenditure reasonably reflects ‘efficient costs‘, are recoverable by the power distributors. The distributors’ current applications seek to recover charges which are in excess of their regulatory budgets for 2015 by demonstrating that these additional costs are both ‘in scope’ and ‘prudent’.

Four of the five power distributors, being Jemena, United Energy, CitiPower and Powercor, pursuant to the Order in Council gazetted on 5 August 2014, propose to apply manual meter reading fees to some customers. According to the amendments in this Order in Council, manual meter reading fees, commencing 1 April 2015, are directly payable by the customer to the distributor where an account holder has refused a smart meter and also where there is an inability to install a smart meter due to a defect (and the customer does not hold a Pensioner Concession card or specified Health Care or Department of Veterans’ Affairs Gold card). If the retailer has agreed, the manual reading fee will alternatively be paid by the retailer to the power distributor.

The AER is inviting submissions on the power distributors’ proposed fees until 30 September 2014. Details of the invitation and the Victorian power distributors’ applications can be accessed here: AER Invitation

Relevant background material can be found here:  Relevant background material-1

Comparison of proposed 2015 annual AMI charges and actual 2014 AMI charges

                                     Service charge                           2015 manual meter read fee

                                    (Single phase smart meter)

                                         2015             2014 (Ex GST)

Jemena                       $231.28         ($193.82*)       $10.83 per read ($2015)

United Energy          $160.44         ($141.33)         $11.05* per read ($2014 ex GST)

AusNet Services       $208.87        ($160.21)         No manual read fee

Powercor                    $108.96         ($115.27**)     $31.07 per read ($2014 ex GST)

CitiPower                    $115.49          ($116.55***)   $19.44 per read ($2014 ex GST)

Note: Jemena, United Energy and AusNet Services’ 2015 service charge is expressed in nominal dollars, whereas Powercor and CitiPower’s service charge is expressed in 2014 dollars.* $12.28 ($2014 ex GST) for interval meter.

* Sourced from Jemena’s Schedule of Service Charges.

** Sourced from Powercor’s 2014 General Service Charge Pricing Schedule.

*** Sourced from CitiPower’s 2014 General Service Charge Pricing Schedule.

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Smart meters cost more than they save

The ‘Daily Mail’ reports that smart meters in the United Kingdom will cost more than the savings customers make.

The Public Accounts Committee said the average cost of installing 53million of the devices over five years could amount to £215 per household, or £43 a year, with the expense added to bills.

But over the same period, households can expect to shave only around £26 a year off their bills, MPs said.

Full story

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Mobile firms face billion-dollar lawsuits – will this mark the end of the biggest public health cover up of our times?

This story starts in Italy in 2012 with Italy’s supreme court upholding a ruling that said there was a link between a business executive’s brain tumour and his heavy mobile phone usage. The court ruled that scientific evidence in support of the Italian man’s claim was reliable and based on research that was independent and “unlike some others, was not co-financed by the same companies that produce mobile telephones.”

Fast forward to 2014 and move to the United States, where some of the world’s largest mobile phone companies are facing billion-dollar lawsuits brought by brain tumour victims. The biggest ever legal assault on the industry will seek to prove that mobile phone handsets can cause cancer and that FIRMS MAY HAVE DELIBERATELY COVERED UP CRUCIAL MEDICAL INFORMATION.

If the American litigation is successful, mobile phone companies will face crippling bills for compensation. What will this mean for Australian mobile carriers? How will this affect the legitimacy of the Victorian power distributors’ decision to use wireless technologies for their smart meters?

As investors digest the news, billions have already been wiped off the share values of some international wireless industry giants.

The pressure is now firmly on and it may well lead to the bubble of secrecy bursting and the truth FINALLY leaking out that wireless technologies are not so safe after all. It will be interesting to watch how the wireless industry’s spin doctors attempt to down play this announcement.

Interesting times ahead!

Read more:

For more on the Italian case:

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More smart meter fires

Following Stop Smart Meters Australia’s report last month ‘Canadian utility company directed to remove all smart meters in Sascatchewan province’ more news has come to light of smart meters going up in flames.

Lakeland Electric in Florida will soon begin replacing 10,657 residential smart meters over concerns they might overheat. Six of their meters have caught fire during the past year, according to Lakeland Electric’s General Manager.

Read the full report

More reports of US smart meter fires

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EMF summit

EMFsummit imageJoin thousands of people for a free online EMF Summit starting Tuesday 2nd September (US time) and continuing every Tuesday until December. Each week is a new video interview. Learn more about electromagnetic radiation, health and solutions.

As each video is released (Wednesday Australian time) you have 48 hours in which to watch the video as many times as you like.

Sign up here

Speakers are :
Dr. Samuel Milham, epidemiologist (as in Take Back Your Power)
Dr. Olle Johansson, neuroscientist (as in Take Back Your Power)
Barrie Trower, former consultant to MI5 and MI6
Dr. Martin Blank, researcher of DNA damage caused by EMF
Dr. Ross Anderson, EMF consultant & retired physician
Dave Stetzer, dirty electricity expert and retired military electrician
Dr. Ann Louise Gittleman, acclaimed nutritionist and author
Farren Lander, electropollution consultant
…and more.

Video schedule

Sept 2

  • Dirty Electricity: How We Can Co-exist With This Powerful Technology and Its Inherent Dangers

with Dr. Samuel Milham the physician-epidemiologist who first alerted the world about electromagnetic exposure in various careers and the link to human disease

Continue reading

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SSMA advocates for a separate regulatory body to monitor electromagnetic radiation emission levels

ACMA Media Release September 2014

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